Media

The Onion Peels the Colorado Rockies

Plenty of words were written in these parts and beyond about the Colorado Rockies' inexplicable stretch-run success and all-too-explicable World Series collapse -- but few publications proved as insightful as The Onion, whose slogan -- "America's Finest News Source" -- seems less satirical with each passing day.

The paper's sterling coverage began on October 25 with "Rockies Complain About 'Thick' Fenway Park Air." Here's an excerpt featuring a "quote" from one of the team's stars:

"Seriously, I can barely push my bat through this stuff," said Rockies slugger Matt Holliday, who collapsed and had to be administered less oxygen after Wednesday's practice. "I was hitting them as hard as I could out there and the ball was still returning to the earth. We might as well be playing in quicksand."

This web gem was followed by an October 26 entry in the popular "American Voices" series, in which three allegedly real people were asked to share their thoughts about the Rockies' attempt to trademark the term "Rocktober." Respondent "Sue Tate," described as a "systems analyst," replied, "If there is one thing that can make up for a humiliating 13-1 loss, it's a tired marketing catchphrase." As for "Animal Barber," a "radio DJ," he declared, "Someone better not snatch up 'Two for Tuesday,' or it could be back to cleaning grease traps for this classic rock DJ."

A few days later, a November 1 brief featured a wrap-up piece whose headline said it all: "Colorado Rockies: 'What the Fuck Just Happened?'"

Once again, The Onion proves how good journalism can be when facts don't get in the way. -- Michael Roberts

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts